OECD Reviews of Vocational Education and Training: A Learning for Jobs Review of Switzerland 2009

Learning for Jobs is an OECD study of vocational education and training (VET) designed to help countries make their VET systems more responsive to labour market needs.

The Swiss VET system is very impressive. Its many strengths include strong employer engagement within a well functioning partnership of Confederation, cantons and professional organisations. School and work-based learning are integrated; the system is well-resourced, flexible and comprehensive, including a strong tertiary VET sector. VET teachers and trainers, examiners and directors are well prepared, quality control is ensured, career guidance is systematic and professional. Evidence is well developed and routinely used to support policy arguments.

But at the same time there are a number of challenges. The global recession may reduce the provision of apprenticeship training, the entry of international companies may threaten dual system arrangements, competition between academic and vocational education could be sharpened by demographic changes, and there are some equity concerns.

The OECD review assesses the main challenges faced by the VET system and presents an interconnected package of policy recommendations. For each recommendation, the report describes the challenge, the recommendation itself, supporting arguments, and issues of implementation.